Austin was rough. Mighty Rough. I questioned my worth as a mom and wife for leaving my family without mie. I questioned my worth in my career for a lot of reasons.
I tend to do these things when I'm alone. Therefore, I don't let myself be alone often. Thank you blog community for helping mie not to feel alone even when I'm technically alone sitting at my desk.
As it turns out, spending time away from your kiddos and normal family life on occasion can. be. wonderful. Yes, I missed them, but despite my heavy concern God managed to take care of them better than I could while I was away. He managed to help all the kids be good for daddy while I was gone, help daddy have lots of extra patience, and help keep all crazy accidents/incidents/troubles away from the family while I was gone so that things went really, really smoothly. (And apparently Auntie K lets Logan go into his class "like a big boy" - I still have no idea what that means compared to how I do it but it totally lifted little man's spirits).
Hearing how well my kiddos were doing without mie around and how hubby was handling it all helped lift all the weight off my shoulders. I was actually able to enjoy Mie Time sans family. Tuesday morning I went down and spent nearly an hour at the water's edge, just mie and God. (I have a picture but just imagine sunrise over a hill next to a lake where fish are occasionally jumping but otherwise there was complete serenity. And an occasional sound of a boat which brought great memories).
I posted on facebook that I. Was. Refreshed.
(Good thing too because that day was a killer in terms of work. That was when the career self-lashing began.)
In general, the work discussions were healthy and enjoyable. We had LOTS of social time. Adult social time. A 3 hour restaurant dinner with no children. Lots of laughter. (Lots of alcohol, by others, not mie, which made things interesting). Lots of yummy food. Lots of sleep. Catching up on 2 weeks worth of Desperate Housewives. And a run - yes, I even got to go on a run in the hills of the Lakeway (???) community where we were staying. (During which I heard sirens - later I was told that the sirens were responding to an accidental emergency call to not only the police, but also the firefighters, and the ambulances, by my coworkers who were simply trying to adjust the "thermostat" because it was too warm inside. Classic.)
But no taxes.
I didn't realize how refreshing the whole trip was until I arrived at home. My hubby decided to let us go out as a family to our local all-you-can-eat pizza joint, a family tradition of sorts, so that we could reconnect and have fun celebrating mommy's return. With 4 kids 1, 2, 3, and 5 this is often quite an exhausting task. Managing the food and drink demands, restroom demands, "MOM can I go play the games NOW?" demands, and keeping everyone in their seat this trip is usually quite daunting. Instead of being stressed I was completely relaxed and completely ready to meet the needs of all my kiddos and hubby willingly with a genuine smile on my face. I was home with them. I'd missed them. Now we were together again.
I also have had the opportunity to have lots of conversations with a few people about my career and although some of them were hard to have in the end it has been very helpful and God has redeemed that too. I still don't know what's up His sleeve in this area, but I feel refreshed in the moment I'm in and that's all I needed for now.
So, as it turns out, maybe going away from the family for a bit is a good thing on occasion. It had been probably 3 1/2 years since I'd spent time away from them for any longer than my workday, and maybe we all needed just a little bit of that. It doesn't have to happen often, but maybe it's ok if I allow it occasionally.
And I did eventually get my taxes done. I'll tell you about that on Monday (no promises).
By the way, I have my first contributor post up today at Foster2Forever. Go check it out~!